Many Kemper County employees who were laid off are now back at work with new jobs. Pharma Pac, ust outside of Dekalb, closed its doors this year after laying off the majority of employees. The assets were purchased through the foreclosure by Emilia, a cosmetics company based in Israel that provides to major retailers like Walmart and Walgreens.
"We're very excited about them being a part of Kemper County, and they seem to be very excited about being here, as well," Craig Hitt, executive director of the Kemper County Economic Development Authority says. "We are building relationships, obviously, but it's becoming a very good opportunity for Kemper County."
It's an opportunity not just for the area, but for many who lost their jobs in the past year.
Emilia resources has already hired on 53 employees. Fifty-one of those were previous Pharma Pac employees who were laid off, but they say they hope to continue to growing. They hope to have 100 employees by the end of the year.
Hitt believes those employees were probably a major reason that a global company like Emilia would look to Kemper County for its first U.S. manufacturing site.
"I think that was a big draw for Emilia coming to Kemper County," he says. "They knew they had a facility that was already in place that could manufacture the type of product they're manufacturing, and they had individuals who were familiar with that process, as well. "
Hitt says the increase in job opportunity has already helped to boost local economy.